Commission appoints police panel chairmen


Commission appoints police panel chairmen


Date: March 8, 2011
by: Robin Roy | City Editor


The City Commission selected the chairmen to lead two permanent police panels.

Former Mayor Elmer Berkel is now chairman of the Independent Police Advisory Panel, and Ronald Riffel is chairman of the Police Complaints Committee.

Berkel, a 45-year Sarasota resident, spent 34 years as psychologist in the Sarasota County school system and 10 years as a court mediator with the 12th Judicial Circuit.

Riffel, an 11-year Sarasota resident, is a retired social worker. For 13 years, he was the director of counseling at the University of Denver, and he had a private practice in psychiatric social work for 20 years. Riffel also worked with the military police, providing consultation and expert testimony in court-martial proceedings.

The permanent Police Advisory Panel was created to ensure police accountability and foster public confidence in the police department.

The Police Complaints Committee will advise the police chief on the policies concerning the processing of citizen complaints against Sarasota police officers.

Contact Robin Roy at

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